We get it– the vast majority of kids love sweet treats! But what if you could find vegetables for kids without them realizing that the delicious lasagna or smoothies they love are actually healthy?
Here are some delicious veggie recipes to get them all the nutrients they need!
There are many good foods for kids out there, from spinach and broccoli to sweet potatoes and oatmeal. Whether they help with brain development or provide the necessary vitamins, they should be a staple of a child’s diet.
Unfortunately, even though vegetables pack the most nutrients, getting your toddler or teenager to eat them at each meal is no easy task! However, with the right recipes, you can get your whole family to enjoy kid-friendly, delicious veggie recipes with their meals and snacks.
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Why Is It Hard to Get Kids Eating Vegetables?
It might seem like just a little bit of patience will get your toddler or big kid to eat veggies, especially if you’ve got a house full of picky eaters resistant to try new foods. However, you might be surprised to learn that there’s a scientific reason some of us are resistant to try new foods, even the ones we know are “good for us.”
In nature, many sour or bitter things were poisonous. As a result, our ancestors who ate sweet things were more likely to survive! While we’re unlikely to come across something truly dangerous nowadays, our tastes are the same– we have a built-in preference for sweet treats.
So it may take time to get your toddlers loving carrots and green beans, but there are creative ways to get nutrients in.
What Are Good Vegetables for Kids?
Not all veggies are equally delicious or nutrient-dense, so when you’re looking for the right ones to introduce to your family of picky eaters, don’t be afraid to experiment.
For your source of vitamins and nutrients, leafy greens are hard to beat. So load up on foods like spinach and kale. Not only are they a superfood, but they’re also full of antioxidants and good stuff that helps brain cells grow! Just sprinkle some olive oil and salt on your kale leaves, bake them in the oven around 300 degrees for 20 minutes or so, and you’ve got a delicious treat for the whole family.
Cabbage also has many different health benefits! In addition to improving digestion, this lightly colored green clears toxins from the body.
Tomatoes are also important since they contain lycopene, which protects against many types of cancer. Kids especially love the sweet grape or cherry tomatoes, but be sure to cut them in half if you’re serving them to toddlers.
The same goes for baby carrots. They’re a delicious snack when you eat them plain or dip them in peanut butter or ranch dressing, plus they’re chock full of fiber, vitamin A and vitamin K.
Cruciferous vegetables, like broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and cauliflower, are other great choices, and my kids love bell peppers and sweet potato fries crisped in the air fryer.
Bottom line: healthy food is out there, but sometimes you have to be a little creative, so your family will eat them at all of your meals.
How Do You Make Vegetables More Interesting?
Kids may often fiddle with their vegetables instead of eating them. But if you work together to make food they’ll enjoy, kitchen time can be fun. There are several ways you may even get them to ask for seconds!
- Vegetable Lasagna – There are easy ways to add vegetables to this cheese and pasta dish! You can grill mushrooms, zucchini, and onions and add them into the mix. You may even want to puree cooked cauliflower and add it to the sauce! Whatever the case, your children will hardly notice a difference.
- Secret Smoothie – Kids may like sweet juices and sugary sodas. But, there are healthy ways of eating vegetables for breakfast. Try a smoothie containing green vegetables like spinach. (Kale works, too, but spinach has a milder flavor.) You can add in fruits like strawberries and bananas for added sweetness.
- Super Spaghetti – When it comes to winter, few foods are as much a staple as spaghetti. But this dish can be about more than sauce, protein, and pasta. Whether you add cherry tomatoes, red pepper, or zucchini, this will pack a flavorful punch. It will also help with eating vegetables good for you!
- Pizza With Vegetables– There’s no finger food more popular with kids than a pizza. With cheese and dough, it’s easy to spice up with some vegetables. Whether you add roasted mushrooms, onions, or red peppers, these will only enhance the taste. You can even try shredding zucchini and adding it to BBQ chicken on pizza. Or, mix sweet potato or pumpkin puree in with pizza sauce for a healthy, hidden treat!
For another great veggie pizza, check out our favorite pizza recipe below!
Amazing Vegetable Pizza
- 1 cup water (lukewarm)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp instant yeast
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp sugar
- red sauce
- 1/4 red onion
- 1/4 green pepper
- 1/4 red pepper
- 1/2 small eggplant (optional)
Amazing Vegetable Pizza
- Combine the water, yeast, and sugar in a bowl. Rest for 5 minutes.
- Combine the flour and salt.
- Add the yeast mixture and knead until you get a soft ball.
- Place in a bowl and cover. Let rise for 30 minutes.
- Divide the dough and form pizzas.
- Top the pizzas with sauce and vegetables, cook for 15 minutes on the pizza stone.
It can be tough to get kids pumped about the benefits of eating vegetables, but there are ways to make them delicious! You may even want to go shopping together to find items that everyone will enjoy.
Do you have some tips for getting kids to eat veggies? Share them with your loved ones on FamilyApp! While it may require some patience, the health benefits of this food group are worth it.